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Simple Question, Complex Answer: Pathways Towards a 50% Decrease in Building Energy Use
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Energy and Environmental Technology. Uppsala universitet, Teknisk-naturvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Tekniska sektionen, Institutionen för teknikvetenskaper, Fasta tillståndets fysik.
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Addressing building energy use is a pressing issue for building sector decision makers across Europe. In Sweden, some regions have adopted a target of reducing energy use in buildings by 50% until 2050. However, building codes currently do not support as ambitious objectives as these, and novel approaches to addressing energy use in buildings from a regional perspective are called for. The purpose of this licentiate thesis was to provide a deeper understanding of most relevant issues with regard to energy use in buildings from a broad perspective and to suggest pathways towards reaching the long-term savings objective. Current trends in building sector structure and energy use point to detached houses constructed before 1981 playing a key role in the energy transition, especially in the rural areas of Sweden. In the Swedish county of Dalarna, which was used as a study area in this thesis, these houses account for almost 70% of the residential heating demand. Building energy simulations of eight sample houses from county show that there is considerable techno-economic potential for energy savings in these houses, but not quite enough to reach the 50% savings objective. Two case studies from rural Sweden show that savings well beyond 50% are achievable, both when access to capital and use of high technology are granted and when they are not. However, on a broader scale both direct and indirect rebound effects will have to be expected, which calls for more refined approaches to energy savings. Furthermore, research has shown that the techno-economic potential is in fact never realised, not even in the most well-designed intervention programmes, due to the inherent complexity of human behaviour with respect to energy use. This is not taken account of in neither current nor previous Swedish energy use legislation. Therefore an approach that considers the technical prerequisites, economic aspects and the perspective of the many home owners, based on Community-Based Social Marketing methodology, is suggested as a way forward towards reaching the energy savings target.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Institutionen för teknikvetenskaper, Fasta tillsåndets fysik , 2014. , 104 p.
Keyword [en]
Buildings, Regional energy policy, Energy efficiency, Rebound effect, Community-Based Social Marketing
National Category
Energy Systems
Research subject
Energy, Forests and Built Environments
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-13777OAI: diva2:694717
2014-02-10, Clas Ohlson, Högskolan Dalarna, Borlänge, 09:30 (English)
Available from: 2014-02-07 Created: 2014-02-07 Last updated: 2015-12-16Bibliographically approved

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